Ep334: Scott Buss – Live by Principles of Trust and Transparency

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Guest profile

BIO: Scott Buss lives his life and runs his business based on the principles of TRUST and TRANSPARENCY. He is an aviation expert who explores and connects the synergies between the private jet industry and the unlimited number of luxury lifestyle VIP brands.

STORY: Scott found himself on the wrong side of Arizona’s law and landed in jail for four months. During his time in jail, Scott chose to focus on his life after prison. It was while in prison that he came up with his business idea, a business that is now thriving.

LEARNING: Do not let your past mistakes define you. Always try to make the best out of a bad situation. Be kind and supportive to those going through a rough patch.


“With every negative, there is a positive. It is up to you to figure that out the positive.”

Scott Buss


Worst investment ever

Making the best out of a bad situation

Scott found himself on the wrong side of Arizona’s law and landed in jail for four months. Being locked up left Scott with lots of time on his hands. He decided to put this time into good use.

Scott would read magazines, newspapers, and books. He would then write notes of CEOs and executives worldwide from Entrepreneur, Businessweek, and Wall Street Journal. Scott knew he wanted to be a CEO after finishing his jail term.

Hatching a business idea

Scott would also read quotes on entrepreneurship and keep himself motivated. In the process, Scott got an idea of starting his private jet business. He had been in private aviation for about four years.

When Scott was done with his four months, he was fully prepared to build his business, and so he hit the ground running.

Leaving with life’s lessons

The four months Scott was in jail taught him a lot, mentally and physically, and also about what one can do with limited resources. It also taught him about trust and transparency.

Lessons learned

If you are a spiritual person, draw your strength from prayers

The best form of energy is prayer energy, so renew your strength by praying.

Make the most out of your bad situation

If you are in a bad situation, focus on the positives. Do not wallow in self-pity and just count down the days. Know that the only one who can control the person you will be once the storm is over is you. So make the most out of your horrible situation.

If you have been shown kindness, pay it forward

You never know what someone could be going through. So pay kindness with kindness and bring a smile to someone’s face.

Andrew’s takeaways

Support those who are struggling with the consequences of their bad decisions

If you know somebody struggling with the consequences of their mistakes but is trying to make up for them, do not give up on them. Identify someone who is at their most painful point and reach out to them. It could be a short phone call, a quick visit, or a short talk. This simple gesture could change that person’s life.

Own up to your mistakes but do not let them define you

Own up to your mistakes, apologize and make amends. However, do not let the bad decisions you have made in life define you; instead, learn from them.

No. 1 goal for the next 12 months

Scott’s number one goal for the next 12 months is to continue scaling his private travel business and to launch other businesses.

Parting words


“No matter what you’re going through, if you need somebody to talk to, reach out; I’ll be happy to be a lending hand.”

Scott Buss


Read full transcript

Andrew Stotz 00:03
Hello fellow risk takers and welcome to my worst investment ever stories of loss to keep you winning in our community. We know that to win an investing you must take risk but to win big, you've got to reduce it. This episode is sponsored by a stock's Academy's valuation masterclass, they call it the boot camp for valuation because it takes almost 200 hours and students must value 20 companies to graduate. It really is the complete proven step by step guide to take you from novice to valuation expert go to my worst investment ever.com slash deals before March 31 2021. to claim your 30% podcast listener discount fellow risk takers. This is your worst podcast host Andrew Stotz and I'm here with featured guest, Scott buss Scott, are you ready to rock?

Scott Buss 00:52
I am ready, Andrew, let's get it going.

Andrew Stotz 00:54
I can feel your energy. And I really excited to talk to you today. And we've already started our discussion and I thought we got to get the recorder on. So I'm excited to do that. But I want to introduce you to the audience. So, ladies and gentlemen, Scott buss lives his life and runs his business based on the principles of trust and transparency. Scott is an aviation expert who explores and connects the synergies between the private jet industry and the unlimited number of luxury lifestyle, VIP brands. His strength and passion as a networking specialist is developing and merging new business ideas. Scott has a strong focus on sales and incorporating luxury travel and high end products into the jet aviation space. In addition to aircraft and worldwide jet, private jet charter sales, he loves to create VIP experiences for high net worth clients, and businesses around the globe. Scott, take a minute and filling in further tidbits about your life.

Scott Buss 01:54
I think you summed it up really well. Um, it's a very interesting business that I have. And I'm just ready to dive in and go, let's start what we can do.

Andrew Stotz 02:03
Yeah, so well, then now it's time to share your worst investment ever. And since no one ever goes into their worst investment thinking it will be. Tell us a bit about the circumstances leading up to and then tell us your story.

Scott Buss 02:15
Sure circumstance leading up to it is I had some time to kind of dwell and I was away for about four months. And what I did for that four months, is I don't have access to any social media, nothing. And so what I did is trained my mind in go, I had resources for like magazines, newspapers, and things like that. I knew what I wanted to do. So that's how I formed my business. So what I did every day, is I wrote notes of CEOs, executives around the world from entrepreneur Businessweek, Wall Street Journal, what I had access to, within reasons. And what I did is every day, I filled out that list. And then also I would read, read some quotes and keep myself motivated that way. That way, I had my idea of starting my private jet business because I was in private aviation for about four years. So when I was done with my four months, I wanted to do something and had to hit the ground running that four months taught me a lot of mentally, physically, and how what you can do with limited resources. So when I came out, my biggest tool out of that is I started my business, we can go more into how I started it and what I did. But that's how I utilize LinkedIn is a very powerful tools. I've been using it for many years. But I came out with a list and I still have it to this day, I have a list of about 50 pages about 5000 names, emails from people around the world and business. And that's so that's my little four month away, like a that turned into my business.

Andrew Stotz 03:59
Hmm. And when you say away, what do you mean? It sounds like you're in a cave or something?

Scott Buss 04:05
Um, I was actually, um, I did something not super naughty, but I was locked up unfortunately for months that I take a we take responsibility for Yep, um, it's nothing super serious. But out in Arizona, where the laws are a little bit different. It's not something I share with everybody. Yeah, but the thing but I share this is because it made me who I am. When you said I start my bit my business, my life, my friends. It's all on trust and transparency. It was just a reflection. And so it was a hard, hard, hard four months but I moved on and I'm only growing because of that.

Andrew Stotz 04:45
You know, people see me as you know, in Thailand, like successful in my career and a sincere and honest guy, but when I tell them that at the age of 14 I was locked up in a juvenile detention center. They're a little bit shocked in I think, you know, when they hear that I've been, you know, basically put into three different rehabs over almost a year of getting clean. When I was 1617, you know, that it's kind of hard to believe. And I think the lesson that I always say, and this is a question I always ask in ethics class that I say to people is that, imagine two people steal, and one gets caught, and the other one doesn't. Which one is more ethically, you know, wrong? Well, society tells us that the one that got caught is the one who, you know, we focus on. But as I always say, you know, think about the worst thing you've ever done. And this is my challenge for the listener, think about the worst thing that you've ever done. And chances are, you didn't even get caught. And, but the chances are, there's another person right down the street that did get caught. And their outcome is a very different outcome, despite the fact that you've both done the exact wrong thing. And I read the other lesson that I learned from this is that, you know, we had a situation and ethical violation here in Thailand with one member of our society here. And as a president of CFA society, you know, it's our job to kind of root that out. But, you know, we're also human. And as President, I called to the guy that was under this trouble, and I just said, you know, there's no choice we have to do what we're doing. But the reality is, is that this doesn't have to shape you, and you can, you know, make amends for what you've done. And you can use this as something that propels you to, you know, a great future future where you're really sincere and honest. And so, you know, the minute we started talking off the mic, and I really heard about trust and transparency, I loved that, but then would you be being able to be trusted, you know, to be able to be transparent about things? It really, you know, it's, it's the key, we learned through those experiences. So I really appreciate the fact that you would, you know, do that. And I would think that, you know, part of what your worst investment ever is that, you know, you had to sit and think, and there's, there's a great book by Weldon long, long, I think it is called the power of consistency. And he was locked up for many, many years. And what he ended up doing was trying to build his vision of what he wanted to become when he got out to be a good father, you know, to be able to make a living, and I highly recommend that book. I mean, I've listened to it so many times. And it's the, it's the defeat, that can really define us to become great. So a lot of stuff that I'm saying there, but any other thoughts that you'd add to that?

Scott Buss 07:51
I think you it really shapes people, when you go through something like that. And this is something situation that everybody's done it. I hate to say it, and it has to do with drinking and driving. And unfortunately, how many times have people done it and not get caught or 100 times or this or that? Unfortunately, in Arizona, they take it very serious. I was a new resident. And so I had to sit for months. I'll tell you, it's a very humble experience. And when you're in there with murderers, or you're in with all different kinds of people, you, you think, can you grow up real fast, and it took me a little bit but like I said, it's it shaped me and I wouldn't be where I am now in the position or my business, if I didn't have that four month break. So I look at that as a negative, but with every negative, there's a positive, it's up to you to figure that out and find it out.

Andrew Stotz 08:48
So let's, you know, I want to now kind of shaped a conversation by looking at the listeners out there who have faced trouble. They have faced big mistakes that they made, whether that's whether that's in relation to the law, whether that's in relation to family or business, getting angry or hitting someone or whatever those things are. And let's just say that those people may not have been caught in some cases, they may have been caught for what they've done. But those things can weigh heavy on some people. So I want to ask you, you know, what are the lessons that you learn from this experience that they can apply?

Scott Buss 09:29
Oh, where do I start? You know, to be honest, I was always a spiritual person. But I believe I became more spiritual. I read some good books. Um, I figure I always say when you have God with you, who can be against you. The best form of energy is prayer energy. And I always use this is my business and every day, you can pick and choose your boyfriend, your girlfriend, your car, your house, you can't choose your purpose. God does. And so I figured out My purpose is my strength was networking and building relationships and monetizing. So think of the positives, what's going to come out take one day at a time, because if, if it's one year, six months, whatever the time may be, take little by little, because if you're going to sit there and count down the days and the hours and this and that, you're going to run yourself. But know that when you get out, the only one that can control that is you. And you make the difference. If you want to take it a life lesson, or if it's family, driving, money, whatever it may be, you take it and look down and be a man or a woman and say, Hey, this is what I want to do, or this is what I need to do.

Andrew Stotz 10:43
So maybe, I'm going to, I'm going to summarize a couple of takeaways, and I've already given some of that, but I think one of the angles that I want to take is, I want to take the angle of a mother, or a friend, or father, who is dealing with somebody who's struggling with this particular situation, whatever that situation is. And, you know, I think one of the lessons that I want to take away from this is that never give up on you know, and that for me, it was a case of this plenty of people that would have been happy to kick me out of school when I was younger, to just see my life, you know, say you deserve it, you know, I, I was an asshole. And I did a lot of bad things. And, and, you know, I deserve what I got. But my mother in particular, you know, as well as my father and my rest of my family. But I think my mother was pretty strong, that she saw something in me that I just wasn't living up to. And she stuck by me to help me to get through that time. And I changed, I became a better man. And I just think that the lesson I want you to take from this is the lesson of support that we provide to the people around us who are struggling, and to say, you know, your, your your bad decision that you've made, does not define you, you need to make amends, you need to say you are wrong, make those amends, apologize. But that the challenge really is how do you as an outside person, support someone, you know, people in jail, I have another friend in jail in Bangkok, and he got life in prison. And just to go and spend some time with him. He's still a human being. And you know, exactly. So I think the biggest challenge that I want to give to the listener out here is identify someone who is at their most painful point. And reach out just just a short phone call a short visit, a short talk, can, you know can change the world in that person's life. You know, I feel very emotional about it. But that's my big takeaway. And I challenge the listeners to take this story and think about how you can reach out to somebody who is struggling right now. And help them to see, as Scott is saying, to find their purpose. Anything you'd add to that?

Scott Buss 13:17
Ah, I agree, Andrew, um, I got goosebumps, unfortunately. And that's a good thing. Because it hits home. It's around the world, everyone listening to this in different situations, political government countries. I learned to that. You don't know who's going through what if you're going to a store, you don't know the lady going through divorce abused, this guy lost his job. So when I came out, I try to pay it forward. Even if it's a smile on somebody's face, you don't know what they're going through, on the simplest things, um, and I just believe, you know, paying it forward and thinking about the people out there that don't have what you have. And the struggles are real. But that's what shapes you in. you surround yourself with like minded people and good people in your inner circle, you let a couple people in things or be okay.

Andrew Stotz 14:10
So tell me, what's your number one goal for the next 12 months?

Scott Buss 14:16
Oh, stay out of trouble.

Andrew Stotz 14:19
I think you've done that. Well.

Scott Buss 14:21
Be honest, my goal is already taken place with private travel, I'm scaling, where most companies right now are having a hard, hard time in certain businesses or being open, unlucky enough to be busy and have to vamp up and scale and with the pandemic, to launch and other businesses as well. So I'm very grateful. So a year from now, maybe I won't be in as much as involved. I'll be traveling more. It's hard to say. But I'm one of those guys that when I put my hand in something, I want to be involved. It's hard to let go you know, so that's kind of where I'll be at the next year.

Andrew Stotz 14:59
Girl. tastic fantastic. All right listeners. There you have it another story of laws to keep you winning. Remember to go to my worst investment ever.com slash deals to claim your 30% podcast listener discount on the valuation masterclass. As we conclude, Scott, I want to thank you again for coming on the show. And on behalf of a Stotz Academy, I hereby award you alumni status for turning your worst investment ever into your best teaching moment. Do you have any parting words for the audience?

Scott Buss 15:32
No, Andrew, I would just say this. If anybody out there needs a friend or somebody to talk to, I've been through it. Um, you can email me, I believe Andrew will have my social links, um, reach out on LinkedIn. I believe in trust and transparency. I believe in integrity. Obviously, being in the private aviation, I know how to keep things quiet. Between you and I. So if somebody needs to talk, I've been through a very diverse life from lots of family members dying to when I was 20, my friend committed suicide. And it's not about me, but I'm a very diverse person. So no matter what you're going through, if you need somebody and you don't know, reach out, I'll be happy to be a lending hand.

Andrew Stotz 16:15
That's fantastic. And for the listeners out there, that's quite an offer. And so don't hesitate to reach out to Scott. Also, obviously, I'm always open, you know, particularly for people that are struggling to talk. And that's a wrap on another great story to help us create, grow and protect our wealth and truly our health. Fellow risk takers, this is your worst podcast host Andrew Stotz saying. I'll see you on the upside.


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About the show & host, Andrew Stotz

Welcome to My Worst Investment Ever podcast hosted by Your Worst Podcast Host, Andrew Stotz, where you will hear stories of loss to keep you winning. In our community, we know that to win in investing you must take the risk, but to win big, you’ve got to reduce it.

Your Worst Podcast Host, Andrew Stotz, Ph.D., CFA, is also the CEO of A. Stotz Investment Research and A. Stotz Academy, which helps people create, grow, measure, and protect their wealth.

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